Friday Fictioneers Challenge —

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endless-stairs

This was his chance. She was alone. With the speed born of his life in the jungle, he raced silently through the woods and down to the house. Slipping in the back door, he found the stairs and raced up them.

He looked in the room and slowly approached her sleeping form as she tossed and turned. He closed the distance between them, closing his hand over her mouth and dragging her from the bed. She fought against him as he man-handled her up against the wall.

She tried to break away.

Their eyes met as his hands closed around her throat.

(Authors note: This is a hacked up scene that is better written with 200 words. Sorry. Will post the full scence below for those who want the Full-monty of it.)

The figure on the ridge above the house saw the man leave and head towards the barn. This was his chance. She was alone. With the speed born of his life in the jungle, he raced silently through the woods and down to the house. Slipping in the back door, he found the stairs and raced up them.

He looked in the rooms until he found her. He slowly approached her sleeping form and watched as she tossed and turned. He closed the distance between them, closing his hand over her mouth and dragging her from the bed. She fought against him as he man-handled her up against the wall.

‘You will give me the good medicine, Beautiful Mother.’ His voice quietly growled in her ear.

She tried to break away.

‘You will give it to me!’ He violently shook her.

‘No! I don’t know what you’re talking about!’ She screamed as she bit his hand. ‘I don’t have anything!’

Their eyes met as his hands closed around her throat. ‘Give it to me!’ He hissed.

Suddenly, from below, Sparrowhawk heard the door slam, followed by heavy footfalls.

The African’s eyes widened as he threw her onto the bed and dove out onto the balcony. She coughed, gagged, and gasped for breath.

Alexander just as quickly burst into the room, looking ready to kill. He took her cue and ran out onto the balcony, looking for what had caused her to scream. When he saw nothing, he came back to her side.

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30 responses »

  1. This was different as we don’t usually read about a killer who runs to murder someone in their sleep. Of course we are dealing with a “jungle man” and that makes all the difference.

    • If I had broken the word count and put in the whole scene, you would have seen him watching the main male character leave the house and the villian enter the house at a run because this isn’t the first stalking incident.. and, it won’t be the last… He does manage to drop her and run as he hears footsteps. The 100 word limit really kills me, I need like 200 to do a scene proper.

  2. I’m wondering what he was doing in the jungle and why he’s killing her. Will help in some form arrive in time?

    A couple small things. There’s something that needs changing here: “sleeping form as it she tossed and turned.” Seems as though “it” should be taken out. He closed the distance between them and then closed his hand over her mouth–one too many “closes” in close proximity for the flow you want. 🙂

    janet

    • I had to take a few sentences out to fall anywhere near the 100 words. I fear that the loss would lead to confusion like this. Trust me, the original is 173 words and perfect. This is a much mangled and edited short of it.

      • The comments weren’t meant to be anything other than what they are–a few small things and I wasn’t at all confused by the story. Taking “it” out makes that sentence read correctly (and it was probably just left from something you edited, which happens to all of us) and if you want to leave the “close” forms, fine. You could also say he “fastened” his hand over her mouth or something else with a similar meaning.

        janet

  3. I liked your shorter version very much, it felt very immediate, all about the action without having to know why it was happening. You did a good job of editing it down to the bare bones.

  4. Great story – and interesting to see the two versions. It just goes to show that you get a very different feel when you cut and cut and cut down to 100. Like some of the other commenters, I prefer the short version, but both are excellent. If I was to get picky (which I do sometimes) I’d say that the two ‘close’ verbs in this sentence don’t work: “He closed the distance between them, closing his hand”, I’d use a different word for one of them. Do you agree?
    All the best
    ELA

  5. I’m with you in prefering the longer version – much more unusual than the shorter. Personally, I find FF is good practice to edit down to 100 words without losing the unique voice of a longer piece.

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